This response to Thomas Tallis’s iconic setting of this text was commissioned by the Amor Artis Chorus of New York City.
The piece begins by presenting Tallis’s original opening phrase “If Ye Love me, keep my commandments” establishing the harmonic and melodic framework from which the piece will depart.
The soprano solo enters at m5, at which point the harmonic material begins to expand and the texture thickens. The incorporation of the soprano saxophone adds remnants of Tallis’s original melody as a soloistic voice superimposed with the new melodic and harmonic material that is present in the vocal score.
There are many independent phrase entrances that will require singers to be confident when the harmonic shifts might not always be diatonic. In particular, m25 has a dramatic harmonic shift to the key of Cb which needs to be anticipated by all voice parts, but basses in particular, as they execute the Bb to Cb interval that lays the foundation for that phrase.
Attention to all dynamics is crucial to deliver the most emotional and captivating performance possible.
This piece works very well when paired with the original Tallis setting of the text.
If Ye Love Me (SSAATTB)
It is illegal to photocopy music. You must purchase enough copies for each member of your ensemble (minimum 10).